Apple TV adds even more channels, including Disney, Weather, Smithsonian

In addition to the launch of the Vevo app on the Apple TV this morning, a few other notable apps have appeared on the device as well, including two Disney channels. The Disney Channel, Disney XD, The Weather Channel, and the Smithsonian Channel have all arrived on the Apple TV. The Smithsonian Channel and The Weather Channel both give you access to on demand conent. The Weather Channel also allows you to enter your location to see your local forecast.

The Disney Channel and Disney XD allow you to watch live Disney programming. However, you will need to sign in through your cable provider. At launch in the United States, the channels are supported by AT&T U-verse, Charter, Comcast XFINITY, Cox, Midcontinent Communications, Optimum, and Verizon FiOS. More providers are sure to be added later on as deals are struck.

The addition of Disney channels to the Apple TV is yet another push that Apple is making to get live content on their set-top box. Back in June, live ESPN and SkyNews came to the device, and there continue to be rumors around a possible deal with Time Warner Cable to get live content on the Apple TV.

Note that access to this content is dependent on your region. Did you get the new channels? If so, how did they work for you? Either way, what other channels do you want to see?

Joseph Keller is the former Editor in Chief of iMore. An Apple user for almost 20 years, he spends his time learning the ins and outs of iOS and macOS, always finding ways of getting the most out of his iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, and Mac.

  • WeatherChannel is cool - if you set up a home location, you'll see any alerts currently active for the area.
  • I just got on board with Apple Tv last year, and I love it. I think big things are coming. Weather it is a Tv/monitor or whole information, Internet tv thingy. I don't know. But this little gem is about to burst and big things are a coming. I keep thinking back to the Windows Media Center that failed miserably. With the new Mac Pro coming out in a smaller foot print, digital downloads, media, movies, photo, and now home system integration, lights, garage doors, security... This is going to be the next huge key in the the "Digital Hub" that that Steve spoke about years ago. Get ready. It's coming. This little box goes deeper than TV.
  • What is the point if you have to have a cable subscription I guess the on demand feature but these additions do nothing for me Sent from the iMore App
  • ala carte
    Buying only what you need and want.
  • Well said. I couldn't agree more. We got the ATV so that we could CUT our satellite subscription. If I still had my DirecTV or had cable, I wouldn't have gotten the Apple TV. This is not a step forward. Now if I could pay a small fee each month like for Netflix or Hulu, I'd be signing up for the Disney Channel in a heartbeat, but I'm not going back to paying $100 per month for satellite or cable.
  • the Canadian version of Apple TV it sucks compared to the US version. When the US gets like say 4 news apps we Canadians only get 1. No Disney/DisneyXD/Weather Network/ESPEN only got Vevo. We Canadians are out of luck each time Apple updates Apple TV Sent from the iMore App
  • hate to say it but get a roku
  • It's a licensing issue not a platform issue.
  • It isn't just Canadia you know, UK suffers too. And most of the rest of the world
  • Looks like us in the UK luck out once again. I think apple sometimes forget that's there is more than just the USA in the world. All we got was VEVO, great, thanks for that.
    I think it's time apple got together with BSKYB to offer some content over here like SKY GO.
    Sometime I wonder why I stick with my apple products when there mainly aimed at the US market.
    Anyone else offer any thoughts on the above?? Maybe a change of device is needed, my XBOX 360 offers a better option of content, could just stick with that!! Sent from the iMore App
  • I know right I was hoping for more content here in Canada but Apple once again made this update USA only. I hope they see that other countries want more content on their regional Apple TV box Sent from the iMore App
  • So stupid --- in what world is it logical to have a cable subscription to Disney so you can watch the same live programming that's being broadcasted by your subscription to your cablebox/dish from your AppleTV?
  • How many channels do you really watch on cable?
    If you can pay less, watch what YOU want, when YOU want without commercials... It's ala carte.
    I have started canceling package options on my satellite subscription since I went to Netflix. $12.00 > $8.00 Soon I am dumping the rest when I can get just individual stations. Why do you think FX came out with FXX, FMX, subscription baby and cable and satellite folks are trying to position themselves, but I think they are running late just like the music industry with iTunes and see that folks are getting pissed about the hi price for BS on tv and the HIGH prices for a handful of channels that they are watching....
  • It's helpful if you don't have a cable/satellite box in every location where you have a TV.
  • When can we move away from this damn cable subscription? When we people see how badly they are robbing them? It is time for a change in the TV industry. On the flip side, I am very happy to see Apple adding content to Apple TV.
  • This is great for people like me who do not have cable but have internet and use a friend of mine's email to sign in who does cable. I just wish that they added disney junior why not add the entire disney package since. Either way I am happy about this, can't wait for more content to be added now the Apple TV will attract everyone and not just ios owners
  • Not a big fan of having a cable subscription to be able to use more content on the Apple TV as I am a cord cutter right now with Hulu/Netflix and Digital antenna. But another thing that bothers me is the UI and the fact I have to have all these additional tiles added to my display that I may never use. Wish they would make it so I could hide/delete the tiles I don't use for a cleaner interface.
  • You can hide the icons that you don't want.
    Just go to Settings > General > Parental Controls.
  • Nice! Thanks for the tip! The first poster is right though. There should be an easier "Apple" way to hide the icons.
  • This is a really nice step forward for Apple TV users. My kids would love to have the Disney channel back... If only we had not cut back on monthly TV spending, but if I could watch it on my [via cable service subscription] TV, why would I opt to watch it through my Apple TV? Redundant, yes?
    Weather channel... YES! Apple needs to implement an option to hide channels that we do not subscribe to - to reduce unnecessary clicking to get to the channels we do subscribe to. Sent from the iMore App
  • Here are some reasons it's not "redundant":
    1-You can have an appleTV in a room that you don't have a cable box in, get some premium content!!
    2-It's Disney on demand, so if little junior wants to watch Thomas the Train right now, get Thomas & it shuts him up for a bit
  • To point #2, there is a TON of Disney Junior programming on Netflix now, so there is little reason for me to get excited about them adding specific Disney channels to ATV. To point #1, there appear to be a lot of us who only have one TV. In which case, the original point stands: Get an ATV to cancel cable subscription, but cannot watch any of the new channels without cable subscription.
  • viola
  • As mentioned above, you can hide the icons that you don't want.
    Just go to Settings > General > Parental Controls.
  • Someone (ahem, Apple) needs to re-invent the TV experience. I am not talking content here per se but rather that grids of icons just aren’t going to “cut it”. A UI needs to be customized to device it runs on. Microsoft learned this the hard way with ubiquitous Windows 8 on all devices. Also, I love weather apps but I have this gut feeling I’ll open the Weather Channel on ATV once and say “that’s nice” and never open it again.
  • Getting licensing agreements is like herding cats, and each country has it's own group of cats. You focus on where the viewership/interest is and go from there. Tis is just a start, not the end result. Apple simply wants you to enjoy the fruits of their labors and make other station providers aware of what they are up to in order to help herd the cats a bit easier.
  • I do love the Apple TV, but it would be great if they could add some more UK channels.
    BBC iPlayer and Sky Go would be awesome.
  • I'm a UK Apple TV user, Apple need to form some agreements with BSKYB, BBC iplayer & ITV player. I've got a feeling it's coming but a slow roll out...
  • Use vpn to get US ip adress. Can solve problem
  • Sadly, a Uverse internet-only connection will not support the Disney additions (or probably any other non-free content), a Uverse-TV connection is required to access the new Disney additions to the AppleTV … AT&T still gets their pound of flesh.